As a writer I spend my time online interacting in forums and social media sites with other authors and potential readers. I feel it is important to do this as part of my marketing stragety - building up an audience and making myself a valid member of the writing/book community. Because I interact with people on a world wide scale, I feel it is inevitable that sometimes people are going to be offended by the things I say. I would now like to state that whatever I say is not meant to be intentionally offensive. But due to the cultural differences, religious beliefs, terrorism, and political views, it is natural that some comments I make will cause a stir. This is the main reason I try to stay clear of these subjects whenever possible. And if I do have to state my own opinion I try to make it known to everyone that it is as balanced as I can possibly make it.
Sometimes being attacked for what we say is also inevitable - some people will argue just for the sake of it. But Tony highlighted the points we can take to minimise the risk of offence.
- Think before we type. Consider if our message will be read the wrong way by certain people.
- Be aware that you'll always have a reaction to controversial comments.
- This point made me laugh because I always think about it: always make sure your audience is appropriate for your marketing message. As an author who writes books with an erotic element to them, the last place I want to advertise is in a primary school.
- Be quick to respond to any negative views and apologise for them.
What type of writer are you, do you get high from creating a stir? Please let us know.